Hixter, Bankside

Red wine, chicken, red wine, steak
Bling
Rating
Booze
Rating
Sex
Factor

The Vibe

Any serial dater worth their salt has been to Mark’s Bar in Soho. Sitting underneath Hix restaurant on Brewer Street, it’s a dark cocktail den that balances between playful and romantic; not too much for a first date, just enough for a first kiss.

Hixter, another Mark Hix joint on Bankside, has a very similar basement bar but with less of a couples-only vibe. Post-work groups fuse with casual twosomes on third, fourth and 21st dates to create a very relaxed atmosphere. Grab a quick beer while standing, or perch on black cinema-style chairs at a low semi-circular bar necking cocktails. Then, if they’re worth it, sit down to steak upstairs.

The Order

First, red wine or Negronis at the bar. There’s a decent red around the £6 mark but on a date you should hover around the £9ers. Even if eating dinner upstairs, share a snack like chicken popcorn to line the stomach. Once in the restaurant, it’s giant Yorkshire pudding with whipped, buttery chicken livers to start. Then either a roast chicken for two or sirloin steaks, bernaise, chips and token greens. Dessert? I couldn’t possibly.

The Game

A 6pm seating in the bar followed by a 8pm restaurant session. Yes, that’s two hours of pre-drinking but, yes, you can get away with it here. Hobble upstairs, be bolshy with the fun waiting staff and sit at a table for four, side by side. Start on the tap water and food. Squeeze their hand conspiratorially under the table and drop a line. Then crack on with the meal and chat only about the trivial. Snog at the table but don’t go home together – you want to be messy in public, not private.

The Faults

The restaurant isn’t always that full mid-week so you need to bring the noise (or apologise for it).

Sex Factor

3. Probably not tonight but it’s brownie point central.

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